It has been a crazy couple of weeks and I have been craving for cake.
Not the rich decadent sort, but something that could fulfill my cake craving and not have to feel guilty about eating it. I finally got to eat cake (that I made myself!) after spending Saturday morning with Pauline and Louisa of Munch Ministry, and 13 ladies from SMB, where we learnt how to make Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes.
Part of the process in making a chiffon cake is beat the egg whites into a meringue. Unlike the traditional Pandan Chiffon Cakes that my mom used to bake often when I was a child, there isn’t a need for the egg whites to be beaten into stiff peaks for Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes. It isn’t that difficult to make the chiffon cake, however you will need to take note some of the small details in the process to achieve the light and airy texture of the cake.
The separation of the egg white from the egg yolk has to be done quite gingerly, to ensure that no egg yolk will find its way into the bowl of whites which will affect the fullness of the meringue.
As you can see, the activity of separating egg yolks from the whites, can be easy for some like Estella. While for others, like Jennifer, some of the egg yolk did manage to find their way into her bowl of egg whites and she had to try to remove the runny yolks from the mixing bowl. As for my own experience separating yolks from the white? I wasted one egg after being too heavy handed, breaking the yolk when hitting the egg swiftly against the edge of a bowl.
Still need some help in learning how to separate the egg yolk from the egg white? Here’s 6 different ways how to separate egg yolk from the whites.
When it came to beating the egg whites, cream of tartar was added to stabilize the egg whites. Do make sure that the mixer and mixing bowls are clean and dry, Any specks of oil, water or yolk can affect the volume of the meringue. Here are more useful tips I learnt to ensure that the meringue stiffens;
1. Wait for the egg white mixture to turn bubbly and foamy during mixing before adding the sugar. The sugar needs to be added gradually in 3 parts, instead of all at once
2. Cold eggs separate more easily, so do leave the eggs out at room temperature before beating, for maximum volume in the meringue
3. Use copper, glass or stainless steel mixing bowl, and not plastic as it might keep some grease stains which will affect the meringue
4. A small amount of cream of tartar stabilizes the ‘foam’ and makes it less likely to collapse
Digress. I think mom bloggers are experts when it comes to knowing when to stop what they are doing / pass the job to someone else, flash their pearlies and strike that perfect pose for 5 seconds, when a roving camera comes along for a photo opportunity.
Now back to baking.
Mabel (my baking partner) and I shared the duties, she worked on the egg yolk mixture, while I focused on getting the meringue ready. We were concerned initially that the meringue mix was done too early and that it might curdle and collapse before folding in the egg yolk mixture. However, Pauline mentioned that the recipe will work fine even when the meringue is kept aside for a while before being added in (Phew!). Would have been a different story though, if it was Pandan Chiffon that we were attempting to make.
We gently folded in the egg yolk + vegetable oil batter into the egg white meringue and took note not to stir or beat the batter in, so as to ensure a light and fluffy chiffon cupcake. Then it was time to pour the mixture into cupcakes holders and pop in to the oven for about 15-25 minutes.
The cupcakes were removed from the oven when it was lightly browned, and Mabel and I waited for the cupcakes to cool before piping in the custard filling.
We were likely the most efficient team that morning, who got our cupcakes rather quickly into the oven then piped in custard fillings and we couldn’t resist picking up one each for ourselves to try. Probably on a good day with cake cravings, I could devour 5 of these at one sitting.
Ta-daa! Team Efficient with our Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes!
Thanks to Pauline and Louisa for hosting this scrumptious bake date to add to the celebrations for our 1st birthday for SMB. Do check out Munch Ministry website for the recipe for Hokkaido Chiffon Cupcakes.
Do also read Mabel’s post on our baking session with plenty of candid photos.
What’s next for SMB is One? Stay tuned, details to be shared soon!